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Cape should consider county’s meeting rules

June 21, 2019
Cape Coral Daily Breeze

To the editor:

The Cape Coral Council should seriously consider updating its rules.

At the start of each meeting the following is read:

"We will be respectful to each other, even if we disagree, we will direct all comments to the issues. We will avoid personal attacks."

It appears that these rules are only for the benefit of those on the Council.

Do not dare address a Cape Coral Council member or the speaker will get gaveled! One must only speak to the body as a whole.

After public input, members of the Council will comment if they choose to do so. Many resident comments are ignored. I believe that a comment should be made at a minimum by the council member whose district they are in. At the very least, direct them to a resource in the city regarding their concern. Citizens must state their name, so it would not difficult to add the district number that one lives in.

These rules are designed so they can skip over any hot button issues and always get the last word if they elect to address a comment from public input.

On Tuesday, June 18, I attended a Lee County Commissioners meeting. What a breath of fresh air. Citizens fill out a card at the back of the room, stating the agenda item they wish to comment on. Each commissioner has their cards for items they will address. When that item comes up, you are respectfully called up by name and you have three minutes. Once input is finished, they discuss and then vote by item.

One agenda item at time is heard and voted on. There is no standing in line like cattle in a queue.

I would encourage each council member to attend a commissioner's meeting. Please do so when you're not focused on giving a presentation. Please do so to take in the experience and process. It never hurts to know what's happening in other government agencies.

John Karcher

Northwest Cape Coral



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